Please note that due to unforeseen circumstances, this talk will no longer take place at its scheduled date and time. We’ll update this page if updates become available.
The Broad will refund all tickets.
The Broad and X-TRA present
Simone Leigh + Steven Nelson in Conversation
The first in a series of talks addressing the legacy of Joseph Beuys
Thursday, February 22, 2018
Oculus Hall at The Broad,
221 S. Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012
In the first talk in this series, Hugo Boss Prize 2018 nominee Simone Leigh and art historian Steven Nelson, director of UCLA’s African Studies Center and professor of African and African-American art history, will question the themes of spiritualism and mysticism. Beuys was often characterized as a shaman. His objects were created from a precise set of materials, such as fat and felt, and were the result of ritualistic “actions” (or performances) and imbued with symbolic meaning and his private mythology. Leigh’s work may also appear to have mystical allusions: her research-driven practice draws from folklore and traditional religious practices spanning the Caribbean, Africa, and the American South.
Shana Lutker, Los Angeles artist and co-organizer of this series for X-TRA, and independent curator Diana Nawi will provide introductions.
About Simone Leigh
Simone Leigh’s practice incorporates sculpture, video and installation, all informed by her ongoing exploration of black female subjectivity and ethnography. Her objects often employ materials and forms traditionally associated with African art; her performance-influenced installations create spaces where historical precedent and self-determination commingle. Through her investigations of visual overlaps between cultures, time periods and geographies, she confronts and examines ideas of the female body, race, beauty and community.
In 2016, Leigh received a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, the Herb Alpert Award for Visual Art, and A Blade of Grass Fellowship for Socially Engaged Art. She has also been the recipient of the 2013 Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Biennial Award, a 2012 Creative Capital Grant, the 2012 LMCC Michael Richards Award and the 2011 Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant for Sculpture. Recent projects and exhibitions include Trigger: Gender as a Tool and as a Weapon (2017) at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; Psychic Friends Network (2016) at Tate Exchange, Tate Modern, London; The Waiting Room (2016) at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; The Free People’s Medical Clinic (2014), a project commissioned by Creative Time; inHarlem, a public installation presented by The Studio Museum in Harlem at Marcus Garvey Park, New York; and a solo exhibition at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. Leigh is a Hugo Boss Prize 2018 nominee. The prize is juried by an international panel of distinguished museum directors, curators, and critics, and it is administered by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. She was also recently awarded a 2018 visual arts grant by the Foundation for Contemporary Art.
About Steven Nelson
Image credit: Todd Cheney
Steven Nelson is director of the African Studies Center and professor of African and African-American Art History at the University of California, Los Angeles. In addition to his award-winning book From Cameroon to Paris: Mousgoum Architecture In and Out of Africa (2007), he has published widely on the arts, architecture and urbanism of Africa and its diasporas, African-American art history and queer studies. He is currently completing two books: On the Underground Railroad and Structural Adjustment: Mapping, Geography, and the Visual Cultures of Blackness.”’About The Un-Private Collection / Joseph BeuysIn the series: Edgar Arceneaux, Simone Leigh, Steven Nelson, Lynne Tillman, Kerry TribeFull Schedule:February 22Simone Leigh + Steven NelsonMay 17September 22Edgar ArceneauxAll programs at The Broad, Oculus Hall
The Broad collection includes more than 500 Beuys multiples—one of the most complete collections of his multiples in the world and an important resource for Los Angeles. In addition to this new series, The Broad will dedicate one of its 2018 Summer Happenings to Beuys and the Fluxus art practice in music and performance. The Un-Private Collection series is made possible in part by the generous support of Leading Partner East West Bank. Widely regarded as a major figure of the German postwar avant-garde, Beuys explored the concepts of humanism, social philosophy and anthroposophy through his diverse body of work, which included traditional media such as drawing, painting and sculpture, to time-based “action” art, installation art and performance art. Beuys viewed art as a vehicle for social change, and throughout his career, he was a vital voice on a wide range of subjects including political, environmental, social and cultural trends. The Broad has partnered with the quarterly contemporary art journal X-TRA, whose mission is to provoke critical dialogue about contemporary art, to curate the series.
“Beuys understood that debate and teaching were crucial facets of his art practice, and that artists play a central role in driving public discourse on issues facing society. Inspired by the his practice and activism and the need for arts institutions to play a role in shaping public dialogue on pressing social and political issues, this new series of Un-Private Collection conversations brings together artists, educators and critics to explore their respective creative practices and to re-access and re-frame key themes within Beuys’ for contemporary times.” said Ed Patuto, director of audience engagement. “In addition, the series includes a workshop led by Los Angeles artist Edgar Arceneaux that will address the themes of effectivity and social practice aimed at developing better financial models for artists and art professionals working both inside and outside the commercial art market and art institutions. Arceneaux’s proposition for organizing artists follows in the footsteps of Beuys and his social and political activism.”Each program will highlight a theme central to Beuys, and invites contemporary artists to discuss their work and ideas through that lens.
About The Un-Private Collection
The Un-Private Collection is The Broad’s ongoing series of public programs launched in September 2013. The series introduces audiences to the museum’s postwar and contemporary art collection by showcasing stories behind the collection, the collectors and the artists. Since launching the program, The Broad has brought together a variety of artists in conversation with cultural leaders, including Mark Bradford with Katy Siegel, Shirin Neshat with Christy MacLear, Jeff Koons with John Waters, Takashi Murakami with Pico Iyer, Eric Fischl with Steve Martin, John Currin with James Cuno, Kara Walker with Ava DuVernay, and architect Elizabeth Diller with Eli Broad, Joanne Heyler, Founding Director of The Broad, and Paul Goldberger. Talks have been held at venues throughout Los Angeles, making the programming available to audiences across the city. Conversations are livestreamed and full videos of past talks are available online at http://bit.ly/Un-PrivateCollection.
About The Broad
The Broad is a contemporary art museum founded by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad on Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles. Designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro in collaboration with Gensler, the museum offers free general admission. The Broad is home to the 2,000 works of art in the Broad collection, which is among the most prominent holdings of postwar and contemporary art worldwide, and presents an active program of rotating temporary exhibitions and innovative audience engagement. The 120,000-square-foot building features two floors of gallery space and is the headquarters of The Broad Art Foundation’s worldwide lending library, which has actively loaned collection works to museums around the world since 1984. Since opening in September 2015, The Broad has welcomed more than 1.7 million visitors. For more information on The Broad and to sign up for updates, please visit thebroad.org.
Artwork image credit:
Dunham II, 2017
Terracotta, graphite, and steel
41 1/2 x 22 x 23 inches
(105.4 x 55.9 x 58.4 cm)
© Simone Leigh; Courtesy of the artist and Luhring Augustine, New York.
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